University Will Launch Summer Edge Program For Pitt Undergraduates

Issue Date: 
January 21, 2013

A dynamic new series of programs will be launched this summer for undergraduate students on the Pittsburgh campus. The Pitt Summer Edge will offer six pathways of exploration for students who are seeking to complement or strengthen their current plans of study with an intensive academic experience enriched by complementary experiences outside the classroom.

The Pitt Summer Edge programs have been designed to appeal to, for example, an art major who wants to gain business skills or a pre-medical student who wants to learn more about biomedical theory and practice. Students who are uncertain about their career goals can spend six weeks exploring potential career paths through personalized job shadowing and internship experiences under the direction of a career coach. The Pitt Summer Edge programs offered in 2013 are described below.

The Edge in Career Exploration 

This program will provide students undecided about an academic major and/or uncertain about a career path with a much-needed focus on academic and career exploration. Several general education core courses will be combined with intensive outside-the-classroom career-defining activities. These activities will include job shadowing within a variety of industries and organizations and mini-internship placements both at on-campus sites and with local employers. Students will be assigned career coaches in order to maximize their career exploration experiences. 

The Edge in Energy: Energy Today, Energy Tomorrow 

Students from the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields may be particularly interested in this program on renewable and nonrenewable energy sources. 

Students will study how energy technologies have the potential to not only improve the world’s supply of energy, but also facilitate solutions to water and food problems. This program includes a study-abroad trip to either Australia or Brazil. 

The Edge in Entrepreneurship and Organizational Innovation

Students in this program will become familiar with the history and theory of social entrepreneurship and how it is used to spur development in economically challenged environments, both in the United States and abroad. Students will learn how increases in national and global socioeconomic well-being are vitally linked to the growth rate of new businesses and the innovation rate of established firms. The global business environment will be a constant theme in the program’s curriculum. 

The Edge in Ethical Leadership in Business and Society

Students in this program will gain an understanding of the various models of leadership and the core principles of ethics that can be applied across a variety of different organizations. In addition, students will practice core skills that leaders need to perform effectively and will learn to identify and process the vast range of competing organizational pressures to deal effectively with complex situations and make responsible, ethical decisions in today’s environments.

The Edge in Medicine and Biomedical Research: Concepts and Values in Medicine

A consortium of faculty from Pitt’s renowned medical school, biomedical sciences departments, and Department of History and Philosophy of Science have put together a program on biomedical theory and practice. This program is intended to be especially attractive to undergraduate students with career goals in the health sciences and those aspiring to attend medical school.

The Edge in Public and Global Health 

This program will provide a comprehensive, hands-on introduction to the field of public health. Students will learn to analyze and tackle critical world health problems through the integrated application of biological, social, and quantitative sciences. Students will learn about the critical thinking skills and real-world tools used by health professionals to track outbreaks of emerging diseases, evaluate environmental threats, and develop community-based prevention and wellness programs.

Typically, program sizes will be limited to 25 to 30 students, who will attend classes and related activities together in a program cohort. Those who complete the program will receive a notation on their academic transcripts. 

The Summer Edge is accepting applications from Pittsburgh campus undergraduate students on or before Feb. 15, 2013. Visit for more information.